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TAG Line May 21, 2021

Pfc. Abbie Jensen, Culinary Specialist, 1st Battalion, 112th Aviation Regiment, conducts familiarization fire with the MK19 Grenade Launcher, at the Limestone Hills Range, Fort Harrison, Montana, May 18, 2021. Increased proficiency with crew served weapons improves lethality. (National Guard photo by Command Sgt. Maj. Nick Clark, 1st Battalion, 112th Aviation Regiment)

Air Defense Artillery Preps for DC Mission

Soldiers with the 1st Battalion, 188th Air Defense Artillery Regiment’s Minimum Deployment Package (MDP) conducted AN/MPQ-64 Sentinel radar familiarization and emplacement during the battalion’s annual training at the Camp Grafton Training Center, Devils Lake, North Dakota, May 17, 2021. This training helps prepare the unit for mobilization for duty in the National Capital Region (NCR). During this deployment, the MDP will assist in providing early-warning ground-based aerial surveillance. (National Guard story and photos by Staff Sgt. Scott Douglas, 1st Battalion, 188th Air Defense Artillery Regiment)

Spc. Dillon Fischer, 1st Battalion, 188th Air Defense Artillery Regiment, operates the AN/MPQ-64 Sentinel radar during annual training at Camp Grafton Training Center, May 17, 2021.

Army Aviators Take off to annual training

More than 180 Soldiers from 1st Battalion, 112th Aviation Regiment (1-112 AVN), hailing from four states, are engaged in annual training at Fort Harrison, Helena, Montana, May 14 to 28, 2021. (National Guard story by Maj Russ Sundby, executive officer, 1st Battalion, 112th Aviation Regiment)

Besides North Dakota, the other states that have units assigned to the 1-112 AVN are Montana, Oregon and Wisconsin. According to the unit's top enlisted Soldier, Command Sgt. Maj. Nick Clark, this is the first time that so many of the subordinate units of the battalion trained together. The battalion assembled eleven UH-72A Lakota helicopters and are practicing all aspects of tasks associated with their aerial mission of medical evacuation and light transport.

Crew members prepare their UH-72A Lakota helicopter for flight en route to annual training in Helena, Montana, May 14, 2021.

Crew members prepare their UH-72A Lakota helicopter for flight en route to annual training in Helena, Montana, May 14, 2021.

More than 55 Soldiers from 1st Battalion, 112th Aviation Regiment, exercise during annual training held in Helena, Montana, May 18. (National Guard photo by Maj Russ Sundby, executive officer, 1st Battalion, 112th Aviation Regiment)
Sgt. Chad Reimer, left, and Staff Sgt. Robert Cariveau, both of Company A, 1st Battalion, 112th Aviation Regiment, practice night-time target acquision with the Engagement Skills Trainer (EST) during annual training, Fort William Henry Harrison, Montana, May 16, 2021. (National Guard photo by Sgt. 1st Class Jordan Hart, Company A, 1st Battalion, 112th Aviation Regiment)

Hooligans Conduct First MQ-9 Flight Using Ground-based Detect and Avoid Radar System

The 119th Operations Group’s launch and recovery element (LRE) successfully conducted its first flight of an MQ-9 Reaper using a ground-based detect and avoid (GBDAA) radar system on May 13, 2021. (Story, and photos by Capt. Jeremiah Colbert, 119th Wing Public Affairs Officer)

The GBDAA radar allows the MQ-9 to operate in the national airspace system (NAS) without the requirement of a chase aircraft. Previously, the Happy Hooligans were required to take-off from Hector Field and have a chase aircraft accompany the MQ-9 to the restricted airspace over Camp Grafton near Devils Lake, N.D., where the MQ-9 would then climb to Class A airspace above 18,000 feet, where chase aircraft are not required by the FAA.

Now, with the GBDAA radar in-place, the Hooligans can take-off from Hector Field without a chase aircraft and travel to multiple FAA-approved airspace locations to conduct training with joint ground and air units. GBDAA also will decrease response time if the MQ-9 is tasked to support domestic operations (DOMOPS) situations.
The system is anticipated to decrease the weather cancellation rate by more than 30 percent, and increase training flight-hour production by more than 35 percent due to increased scheduling flexibility and increased transit speeds.

Photo: Lt. Col. Ryan Becker, 119th Wing chief of plans, speaks to members of the 119th Operations Group, as he prepares an MQ-9 for taxi and take-off as part of a first-flight that tested the wing’s new ground-based detect and avoid radar system at the N.D. Air Guard base, May 13, 2021.

This first flight was a culmination of efforts across the 119th Wing. Additionally, it involved more than four years of coordination with the National Guard Bureau, FAA, local air traffic controllers, and contractors to finalize the process to allow the Hooligans to conduct flights of the MQ-9 using a GBDAA radar system at Hector Field.
“The ability to operate the MQ-9 in the NAS without a chase aircraft is a really big deal,” said Lt Col Ryan Becker, 119th Wing chief of plans. “This advancement enables the Hooligans to expand our ability to facilitate continuation training for the MQ-9 enterprise.”

Photo: Lt. Col. Ryan Becker, 119th Wing chief of plans, taxis down the runway at Hector Field in an MQ-9 as part of a first-flight that tested the wing’s new ground-based detect and avoid radar system, May 13, 2021.

Bridge Engineers Breech Missouri River

About 100 Soldiers of the 957th Engineer Company (Multi-role Bridge) practiced their bridging skills in the Kimball Bottoms area south of Bismarck, N.D., during their IDT (Inactive Duty Training) period, May 14 to 16, 2021. (National Guard story and photos by Bill Prokopyk, N.D. National Guard Public Affairs Office)

The engineers practiced launching and recovering their Improved Ribbon Bridge bays, latching bays together into rafts, and guiding the rafts with bridge boats.

A Soldier with the 957th Engineer Company (Multi-role Bridge) guides an M1977 Common Bridge Transporter in preparation for launching its Improved Ribbon Bridge (IRB) bay into the Missouri River, May 15, 2021.
A Soldier with the 957th Engineer Company (Multi-role Bridge) watches an Improved Ribbon Bridge (IRB) bay open seconds after being dropped into the Missouri River, May 15, 2021.

Soldiers 957th Engineer Company (Multi-role Bridge) pull an Improved Ribbon Bridge bay section into place before latching to an existing raft on the Missouri River during an Inactive Duty Training period, May 15, 2021.

Bridge erection boats are latched to connected bays of the Improved Ribbon Bridge during rafting operations on the Missouri River, May 15, 2021.

Sgt. 1st Class Charles Highland, N.D. National Guard Public Affairs Office, center, records bridge training by the 957th Engineer Company (Multi-role Bridge) on the Missouri River, south of Bismarck, N.D., May 15, 2021.
Soldiers of the 957th Engineer Company (Multi-role Bridge) practice recovering Improved Ribbon Bridge (IRB) bays from the Missouri River, May 15, 2021.
An M1977 common bridge transporter (CBT) vehicle leaves the bridging area at Kimball Bottoms on the Missouri River en route to the unit's engineer equipment park, May 15, 2021.
Common bridge transporter (CBT) trucks at an engineer equipment park at Kimball Bottoms, south of Bismarck, N.D., May 15, 2021.

Military Police Train on Medical Evacuation

Soldiers assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Detachment, 131st Military Police (MP) Battalion, conducted MEDEVAC (medical evacuation) training supported by a UH-72A Lakota helicopter from the Nebraska Army National Guard's Company D, 1st Battalion, 376th Aviation Regiment, during annual training, Camp Ripley Training Center, Minnesota, May 19, 2021. (National Guard story and photos by Maj. Jay Shelton, 131st Military Police Battalion)

This aerial MEDEVAC training is in preparation for the MP's three-day culmination FTX (field training exercise) scheduled to begin May 21, 2021. About 300 Soldiers from the 131st MP Battalion, consisting of the 191st MP Company, the 816th MP Company, and the 3662nd Support Maintenance Company (SMC) are engaged in annual training at Camp Ripley Training Center for the past week. Soldiers completed the Army Combat Fitness Test, and improved their lethality through weapons training that including the qualification with the M4 carbine and M249 squad automatic weapon (SAW); the Browning M2 50 caliber and M240B 7.62 machine guns; M9 Combat Pistol, as well as the M9 United States of America Law Enforcement (SALE) used by military and civilian law enforcement officers.

Soldiers assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Detachment, 131st Military Police (MP) Battalion, conduct medical evacuation training with the Nebraska Army National Guard's Company D, 1st Battalion, 376th Aviation Regiment, during their Annual Training, Camp Ripley, Minnesota, May 19, 2021

Bucks Celebrate Military Appreciation Month

In honor of May, Military Appreciation Month, the Bismarck Bucks football team provided complimentary attendance to military members and their families during their game on May 15, 2021. (National Guard story and photos by Sgt. 1st Class Charles Highland, N.D. National Guard Public Affairs Office)

Jessee Orgaard, father of Spc. Tyler J. Orgaard, performs the national anthem at the Bismarck Bucks football game, May 15, 2021. Tyler was killed in action while serving with the North Dakota National Guard's Williston-based 818th Engineer Company, Afghanistan, Dec. 3, 2012.
Spc. Tyler Orgaard, 818th Engineer Company (SAPPER).
Maj. Mike Champaign, N.D. National Guard, waits to be escorted onto the field by a game official at a Bismarck Bucks football, Bismarck Event Center, May 14, 2021. Champaign had the honor of flipping the coin in honor of MILITARY APPRECIATION NIGHT
The team captains for the Bismarck Bucks, left, and the Green Bay Blizzard, watch the coin land that was flipped by Maj. Mike Champaign, N.D. National Guard, at Military Appreciation Night, Bismarck Event Center, May 14, 2021.

Region VI BEST WARRIOR

Students Explore Guard Opportunities

Nearly 200 high school juniors and seniors explored career opportunities at the 2021 North Dakota Aviation Career Expo, Fargo, May 14, 2021. (National Guard story by Bill Prokopyk, N.D. National Guard Public Affairs Office)

The N.D. Army National Guard provided a static display of a UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter for the expo that was held in the vicinity of the Fargo Air Museum.

North Dakota Army National Guard's Chief Warrant Officer 4 Joe Parsons discusses the capabilities of a UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter with a student at the North Dakota Aviation Career Expo, Fargo, May 14, 2021. (Photos courtesy of Darren Hall, Fargo Jet Center)

Sergeant 1st Class Daniel Smith, a recruiter with the North Dakota Army National Guard, visits with students at the North Dakota Aviation Career Expo, Fargo, May 14, 2021.

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